3 tips for keeping motorcycle cool in the heat

TIPS FOR KEEPING YOUR BIKE COOL IN THE EXTREME HEAT

As the hot weather of summer is upon us, the heat and humidity can cause issues for your bike if you aren’t careful.  In order to keep a motorcycle cool in the heat, it requires some extra maintenance.

1. CHECK YOUR ENGINE

During the summer months, it is important to keep your engine cool.  To do that, it is important to take precautions prior to rides and trips.  Check for signs of leaks and obstructions in your water pump and hoses to make sure that the oil cooler runs optimally.  Additionally, use a bristle brush along the radiator and cooler to clear away debris and dirt. This should be done every few weeks because this can lead to excess heat build up.  

2.  CHECK YOUR FLUIDS

Proper levels of coolant and oil are critical to keeping your motorcycle cool and clean.  Every month, you should check the coolant level and drain and replenish fluids as needed. Also, check your oil regularly and change it according to the manufacturer’s recommended schedule. Remember to keep an eye on the oil pressure gauge, this will warn you of any serious problems that could damage your engine.

3. CHECK THE TIRE PRESSURE

Make sure that the pressure of your tires remains at the recommended level.  An under-inflated tire is very dangerous and you don’t want to get caught on a long ride without proper tire pressure. If tires are under-inflated, they are more likely to blow especially in hot and humid conditions. To prevent this from happening, use a pressure gauge to check the tire pressure on a weekly basis.

Essentials For Your Roadside Emergency Kit

If you are a driver, you never know when you may encounter an emergency on the road.  If you should ever break down, a roadside emergency kit is a must. Here are some essential items that you should include in your kit:

  • No-spill gas can (2-5 gal.)
  • Jumper cables (12-20’, be sure to get the right gauge for your vehicle)
  • Roadside flares/glowsticks (4, check out these reusable LED flares)
  • Flat tire inflation canister (non-explosive)
  • Spare tire and jack
  • First aid kit
  • Bottled water (2-3 gal.)
  • Flashlight and extra batteries or flashlight that doesn’t need batteries
  • Small, foldable shovel
  • Car escape tool  (incl. seatbelt cutter and window breaker)
  • Blankets
  • Two quarts of oil
  • Roll of duct tape
  • Paper towels / rags
  • Multipurpose tool
  • Seasonal supplies (rain gear, umbrella, ice scraper etc.)

Another essential to keep you safe in case of a breakdown or emergency is installing the T3 Vehicle Security System in your car.  T3 alerts you immediately if your car has an emergency or unauthorized movement. You call the T3 to connect a 3-way call to the 911-Operator located closest to your car – even if you are thousands of miles away.  You are talking directly to police within seconds of the emergency. No call center is used – saving you time and money. LoJack® doesn’t do this. OnStar® doesn’t do this.  No other anti-theft system can do this.

Get your RV ready for the camping season

Are you getting your RV ready for camping season?  There are many things that you need to check on your RV to get it ready, but there are a few things you don’t want to forget.  To get your RV ready for a safe and worry-free camping season, here are 4 things you don’t want to forget:

Batteries:  Oftentimes, RV owners remove their batteries for the winter.  If they were properly stored over the winter, your battery still has likely lost a percentage of its charge.  Stored batteries tend to lose about 10% a month. The first thing you want to do is fully charge the batteries.  After its fully charged, you should add distilled water following instructions by the manufacturer. A quality service facility can help you do all of this, if you aren’t comfortable doing it yourself.

Water System: If you winterized your RV using antifreeze, it is important to run fresh water through the water system so that all remnants of the antifreeze have been cleared.  Inspect your water heater also. If it was placed bypass mode during the winter, take it out of by-pass mode. If there is any antifreeze in the water heater, it needs to be trained. Additionally, replace any water filter cartridges that were removed.

Tires: Tires lose air pressure when they are in storage, which means they could be dangerously low.  Check the tire pressure with a tire gauge and make adjustments according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. Don’t forget to check that your spare is in good working order and its tire pressure is correct.  

Oil Level: Make sure you inspect the oil level in the generator.  Your owner’s manual should provide specified intervals. Also, check the generator exhaust system.  If you didn’t run the generator over the winter, you should run it for about two hours.

If you are uncomfortable with getting your RV ready yourself, you can always take it to an authorized service provider that will make sure it is running according to specifications.  

DIY Motorcycle Maintenance

If you want to keep safe and save yourself a little bit of money on your motorcycle, there are a few ways that you can easily maintain your bike.  Depending on your bike, these tasks may vary, so you should consult your owner’s manual before you do it.

1. Change the Oil–your oil should be changed after several thousand miles in order for your engine to run properly.  Make sure, that before you change the old, you take a short five minute ride, just to warm up the engine. This will help the oil drain easier.  Turn off the engine, stand your bike upright, remove the drain and oll plugs and let the oil drain into a pan (make sure to remove the oil filter as well).  Once you have it drained, replace the oil filter, put back the parts you removed and refill using a funnel.

2. Replace the Air Filter–your air filter is what keeps debris out of your engine.  It is important that it isn’t dirty or clogged because then your bike won’t run properly.  Generally, changing the air filter is easy. But on some bikes, they can be hard to get it. Removal of the gas tank and other parts may be necessary to access the air filter.

3. Maintain Tire Pressure and Tread–Checking a tire’s air pressure is simple–you just need to locate the valve on the inside of the wheel and press an air pressure gage on the valve stem. The correct PSI for your tires is located on the sidewall of the tire.  Fill the tire so it meets the correct PSI, do not over inflate. Checking your tread is easy as well, there is a wear indicator (a rubber knob located in the grooves of the tire). If you find that your tread is low, your tire should be replaced by a qualified mechanic.

4. Change the Coolant–Coolant is important to your motorcycle because it prevents your engine from freezing or overheating.  To change the coolant, remove any parts or bodywork to gain access to the coolant drain bolt. Using a drain pan under the engine, remove the bolt and make sure you remove the radiator cap.  Once drained, replace the drain bolt and use a funnel to refill.

5. Keep a Clean Chain–When your chain gets really dirty or at the suggested mileage for your make and model, you will need to clean the chain.  Use a gentle bristle brush, while the rear of your bike is elevated and the transmission is in neutral. To lubricate the chain, apply chain lube.  

Simple Spring Maintenance Tips For Your Car

As winter winds down and the weather gets nicer, you need to make sure that you are properly maintaining your car.  Most importantly, you or your mechanic should check your engine and your alignment and suspension. Here are a few other easy things that you can do to get your car ready for spring.

Clean the Inside

Spring is the perfect time to clean the interior of your car.  Remove and throw away all the trash and debris that has accrued over the winter.  Vacuum the carpets and seats and wipe down all interior surfaces. Choose a warm, sunny day to complete this job.  

Wash and Wax

Now that the winter is over, a thorough wash and wax is important.  Winter driving can cause road grime, debris and salt to build up on your car which can affect the paint and finishes.

Tire Pressure

Cold winter temperatures cause your tire pressure to decrease and warmer temperatures can cause the pressure to increase, so make sure you check your tire pressure and that it meets your manufacturer’s specifications.

Wiper Blades

Your wiper blades may have taken a beating over the winter due to snow and ice, so you should check them for any signs of cracking or wear.  Because the spring brings with it rain and thunderstorms, you need to make sure your wiper blades are in good working order.

And don’t forget to install your T3!

5 ways to prevent distracted driving

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Increased in-vehicle technology like cell phones and dashboard touch screens actually are a threat to our safety.  Each day, almost 9 Americans die and 100 are injured because of distracted driving. Here are a few ways that distracted driving can be prevented:

  1. Don’t eat while you drive
  2. If you feel tired, pull over.
  3. Before you get on the road, finish dressing and any personal grooming, including applying makeup.
  4. Make sure children and pets are secure before hitting the road. Reaching into the backseat can cause you to lose control of the vehicle, so if they need your attention pull off the road.
  5. Only use your cell phone in emergency situation when you are driving.

TT3 Tip: Did you know that the 911Tracker lets the owner or their authorized emergency contact call the 911-Operator located closest to the vehicle.

Did you know that if you have your T3 call 911, the 911 operator will be able to see exactly where your car is located?  When the T3 user (either owner or their emergency contact) is talking to the 911 operator, either the T3 user or the 911 operator just presses 3 and the T3 speaks the pinpoint GPS location along with the speed and direction of the vehicle. Allowing emergency responders to get to the exact location of your emergency and help.

WHY CHOOSE T3? The T3 Vehicle Security System is different than any other anti-theft system. No call center is used, saving the T3 owner time and money. Not only can it be a lifesaver in an emergency situation, but the T3 will alert you if there is any unauthorized movement in your vehicle.

There is no activation fee, no contract or cancellation fees, and you always get our 911Tracker 30 day Risk Free Guarantee. You can cancel your current plan and begin a new plan at any time. We also provide complete security and we never share your information with anyone.

For more information on the T3 Vehicle Security System visit https://www.911tracker.com/products.

Do You Have A Teen Driver? Install a T3!

When your teen starts driving, often as parents you are consumed by worry. According to recent statistics over 290,000 teenagers were injured and more than 2500 teenagers were killed in the United States due to car accidents.  By installing a T3 in your vehicle, you can help improve your teen’s safety on the road and give you peace of mind,

Here are just a few of the features:

  • T3 follows the instructions that you text from your phone.  
  • T3 alerts you immediately if your car has an emergency or unauthorized movement.  
  • You can check the location of your vehicle anytime by sending a text message to the T3.
  • The T3 responds with a text showing GPS speed, direction, and location on Google Maps™.
  • T3 also has starter disable/enable and the ability to unlock the car door that you control with secure text messages.

5 Pothole safety tips

As the winter months draw to a close, everyone can feel the toll it has taken on the roads.  Potholes are everywhere–some are rather large! Potholes can cause damage to your vehicle including flat tires and suspension and alignment issues, so it is important to learn how to handle them in order to minimize the potential damage they can do to your car.  Here are 5 tips:

  1. Maintain a safe distance between your vehicle and the car in front of you. This will help you spot the potholes ahead of you.
  2. Avoid large puddles of water.  These can just be potholes in disguise.
  3. Slow down.  Let’s face it, sometimes you just can’t avoid hitting a pothole, so slow down and grip the wheel so you won’t lose control of your vehicle.
  4. Inflate your tires.  By having your tires inflated to your vehicle’s manufacturer’s recommended level, you can minimize potential damage.
  5. Get suspension checked.  Another way to lessen the damage when you can’t avoid hitting a pothole, is to make sure that your vehicle’s suspension is in good condition.

Sometimes potholes are just unavoidable and your vehicle may sustain some damage.  By following these tips and learning how to safely handle them, it may help to save you frustration and money down the road.  

Tips for being a motorcycle passenger

Have you ever been asked by a friend or family member to take a ride on their motorcycle? Maybe you jumped at the chance to be a passenger or maybe you felt a little bit of fear and trepidation because you were not sure what to expect.  There is a lot of information out there to teach you how to ride a motorcycle, but there are a few things you need to know about being a good passenger too. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Wear the right safety gear.  When you are the passenger, wear gear that will protect you from the elements and make you safer in case of an accident while riding.  You should wear footwear that protects your feet, a helmet, gloves, a long sleeve shirt and pants that are durable. Don’t forget to dress appropriately for the weather.

Getting on the bike.  It is important before you get on the bike that the footpegs are down.  And if you don’t know what the footpegs are, your rider will know and can help you.  Stay away from the hot exhaust pipes anytime your get on or off the bike because they will cause severe burns.  Once the bike and rider are stable and ready, step on the footpeg and swing your leg over the bike to the other footpeg.

Keep your feet on the footpegs.  Once you are in position, your feet should be planted on the footpegs for the duration of your ride. By dangling your feet, you could come into contact with the rear wheel or the muffler which is dangerous for you and the rider.  By keeping your feet on the footpegs, you are keeping yourself and the rider safe.

Sitting on the bike.  Try not to hang or wrap your arms around the rider.  By doing so, you affect their ability to control the bike by putting your weight on them.  Instead, hold onto the rider’s hips or the tank especially when stopping. Try not to squirm or move around too much because this affects the balance of the bike.

Look over the rider’s shoulders during turns.  While the rider leans into the turns, you should not.  If you follow this rule of thumb, you will be positioned perfectly for a turn–look over the rider’s shoulder in the direction of the turn.  So that means if you are turning right, you should look over the rider’s right shoulder; if you are turning left, look over the left shoulder.  If you line up your body with the rider, it will keep the bike from leaning more than it should.

Dismounting the motorcycle. You should only get off the bike when the rider tells you it is okay to do so. If you do so when the rider isn’t expecting it, the sudden weight change could pull the motorcycle over or cause the rider to drop the bike. Don’t forget about the hot exhaust pipes while dismounting either.

Be an active participant.  When you are a passenger on a motorcycle, you can help the rider by being alert and prepared.  Be ready for sudden braking or changes of direction by paying attention to the road. You can also be another set of eyes for the rider, looking for any hazards or animals that may run into the road.

If you are prepared before being a passenger on a bike, it can be a fun experience for both you and the rider!